10 Ways to Practice Self-Care

Self-care is defined as, “any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health.” It’s very rare that people make time to take care of themselves. Once most of the world turned into the busy, time-sensitive environment that it is today, we stopped scheduling time to take care of ourselves. Here are 10 ways you can practice self-love and self-care this week.

1. Schedule Time to Take Care of Yourself

Put down in your planner or whatever calendar you use, that you will be taking time to take care of yourself. Unless something really important comes up, don’t cancel the time that you scheduled for yourself.

2. Keep a Daily Gratitude Journal

Taking time to think about only positive things for a couple of minutes a day, will change your mindset drastically. You could even write down a few things that you like about yourself every day.

 3. Take a Bubble Bath

It has been proven that hot baths elevate your mood by a 2002 University of Wolverhampton study. Instead of taking a fast shower, try taking a relaxing bath and read a book, or watch a YouTube video.

4. Read a Self-Help Book

Reading is always a great way to expand your knowledge, but self-help books are perfect when you have intentions of self-care. Find one that’s perfect for your situation, whether that be stress, anxiety, spirituality, and more! There’s a self-help book for just about everything.

5. Get Off of Social Media

We all know the many reasons we should take social media breaks, and I won’t repeat all of the reasons you have heard many times before. The biggest reason I tell you to take a break from social media is because it’s a huge time waster. When you’re spending time looking at people you don’t know, what they’re wearing, who they’re dating, and whatever else, you could be focusing on you and spending time on yourself. So, put your phone in a drawer, and don’t get it out until you absolutely must use it.

6. Take Yourself to Your Favorite Food Place and Enjoy at Home!

Eating out by ourselves can be scary for a lot of us, so run into your favorite coffee or bagel shop, get an order to go, and enjoy at home! You can watch one of your favorite feel-good movies, or some funny YouTube videos while you enjoy your food!

7. Pray

You know those emotional, word vomiting prayers? Do one of those. Just let it all out and give it to God. Remove the filter between your mind and your mouth, and just say everything that comes to mind. God loves us and is happy with any prayer we say, and our prayers don’t have to be fancy. Just let out all of your emotions.

8. Do a Personal Growth Exercise

Learn more about yourself so you can learn how to better care for yourself. I like this one because it has 25 questions, but it won’t take you very long to answer them.

9. Go on a Walk

Everyone who knows me knows that I struggle to do intense cardio, partially because I have asthma, and partially because it hurts my joints. Did you know that going on a nice, relaxing walk will boost your endorphins and will help you to burn calories, just like running? Walking is so underrated because it is assumed that you must be running to burn calories when in reality, you can burn a similar amount of calories if you walk the same distance. Here is an article that gives some insight on this idea.

10. Have a Spa Day at Home

Do a face mask, paint your nails, put some deep conditioner on your hair, you know what I mean. Listen to some relaxing music while you’re at it too! Just take the night to treat yourself right.

You are so important, so treat yourself, and spend some time caring for yourself. Remove any guilt that you may have when you take time making sure that you are in a good mindset. Let me know which ideas you tried and how they have improved your headspace!

Feeling Hurt and Pain on Christmas: The Truth

Christmas should be the happiest day of the year. It’s the day we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. When we’re in a season of pain and healing, the feelings and emotions don’t stop.

When I was a kid, we lived in the same state as our entire family. I spent Christmas surrounded by both sides of grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and both parents. Now, we live in a different state than our family, my parents are divorced, and a lot of our family members have gone to Heaven.

For a while, when we weren’t visiting our family or when our family wasn’t visiting us, Christmas was just me and my mom. This year, it’s me, my mom, her fiancee, his daughter, and our family friend that we have “adopted” into our family. I’m so incredibly thankful and blessed to have people to spend Christmas with, but I still find myself longing for it to be the same again. Christmas won’t be as large as it once was for a very long time. It probably won’t be the old size until I’m a grandma.

I’m also experiencing pain from other areas of my life, that seem to be broken forever. The pain doesn’t take a vacation just because it Christmas. It’s still very much there, and it feels like it has intensified because of the holiday.

The truth is, Christmas isn’t about the pain I feel, or the number of people that choose to celebrate Christmas with us, it’s about the birth of Jesus. I’m still in pain, and I cried within the first hour of waking up today, but I have to put myself aside because I’m not the one that matters. You know when your friend achieved something that you didn’t, but to be a good friend, you still had to be happy for them and celebrate? That’s the feeling I have this Christmas, and I might have that feeling for years to come. It’s hard, and I know Jesus understands that I’m in pain and that I’m desperately trying to cope, but I have to find the tiny bit of joy that’s left in my heart to celebrate.

I ordered “It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way” by Lysa TerKeurst, because she wrote it out of severe pain, a pain that I can’t imagine going through. When I write a blog post about the (I’m sure numerous) things I’ve learned from her book, I will link it here.

I hope you can’t relate to the pain I’m feeling, but I know that a lot of people do. I will be praying for all of you who do have this pain in your heart. You are not alone.

How to Have Positive Thoughts When Times Are Hard

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Why is it that hard times always seem to occur in cycles? When it rains, it POURS, every time. This has been a common theme throughout my life. When it’s finals week, family drama always occurs. When one of my family members are sick, relationship problems arise. Then, the stress of everything going on causes me to have health issues, which is yet another problem to manage. These are just some examples of what has happened in my life in the past month, and I assure you that all of these things do not occur consistently, only in seasons.

How do we cope with all of these seemingly negative things on top of everything else we already manage? The answer is easy.

Jesus.

I know you’re thinking, What do you mean Jesus? I mean that we must look to Him through these hard times and really lean on him. I used to suffer from a pretty extreme case of Anxiety Disorder, and I used to have to be in control, or else I would have an anxiety attack. I didn’t know Jesus up until 2016, and so it was incomprehensible for me to lean on Him. Once I gave my life to Christ, life got easier, things got less stressful, and I learned how to let go.

The best way to give all of these stressful, tear-jerking, crazy things to God is to submit to Him through prayer. For example, pray: “Dear Lord, I give all of the good things and the difficult things to you. I know that you have a plan for me and the people in my life. I fully trust that You will provide and that You will make everything perfect in the end. Please give me peace, and have Your hand over my life. Amen.”

I know this is difficult to do, I’ve been there. God will never let us down, and he has a plan for each of us. All He calls us to do is trust in Him, and He will provide.

Thank you for reading. You can get through the hard times with the support of Jesus Christ.